RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — State regulators say there's no evidence that a Canadian company exploring for gold in the Black Hills has ownership of a water right dating back to 1898.

The Rapid City Journal reports that Mineral Mountain Resources tried to use the claim to use water from Rapid Creek to lubricate the drill it is using in mountainous terrain near Rochford. The company says it is currently buying water from the city of Lead and hauling it 20 miles to drilling sites.

Company lawyers say the right to the Rapid Creek water is associated with a historical structure known as the Standby Mill. State Department of Environment and Natural Resources officials say they believe the claim was "abandoned or forfeited" by not being in use for several decades.

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